Loving and Serving the Poor with Fr. Mark Mary Ames, CFR

Loving and Serving the Poor with Fr. Mark Mary Ames, CFR

How do we view those less fortunate than us? How do we love them, serve them, and help them encounter Christ? These questions are challenging, and honestly, much easier to avoid by dropping a few dollars into a special collection for the poor. While this act is generous, Christ calls us to so much more: a life fully alive in service to others.

Let Franciscan friar Fr. Mark Mary Ames, CFR be your guide to clarity around this challenging topic with stories, ideas, strategies, and challenges for Catholics of every background. His course will truly transform your mind, heart, and life as a disciple on mission and as a Christian in service to others.

Check out the other Revive course on FORMED:
Evangelization: https://watch.formed.org/evangelization-with-chris-stefanick
Missionary Discipleship: https://watch.formed.org/missionary-discipleship-with-julianne-stanz

Want to learn more about Revive Parishes and get more 8 other courses like this 100% free of charge? Visit reviveonformed.org to sign up today!

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Loving and Serving the Poor with Fr. Mark Mary Ames, CFR
  • Chapter 1: Welcome

    In this groundbreaking course, Fr. Mark-Mary Ames creates an in-depth guide for parishes to love and serve the poor in their communities. Fr. Mark-Mary is a member of the Franciscan Friars of the Renewal (CFRs) and currently serves the poor in the South Bronx. The CFRs began their unique ministry...

  • Chapter 2: Why Should You Care?

    Why should you care about the ministry of serving the poor? In this chapter, Father provides five reasons to encourage you to take on this challenge of better serving those in need.

  • Chapter 3: Introduction

    This chapter introduces a new section of the course focused on the biblical roots of the Church’s vision for serving the poor to convict us of the crucial nature of this call. This is the "warm-up" as we prepare to implement the strategies he will lay out throughout the course.

  • Chapter 4: The Key

    God has invited men and women to participate in His work in a necessary way, and we are all called to join in this work. The Church’s mission to love and serve the poor is at the heart of her purpose. Unfortunately, loving the poor has too often been incorrectly politicized or polarized. Instead ...

  • Chapter 5: The Cry of the Poor

    In this chapter, Father poses a critical question: “Are we cooperating with God’s will to truly serve the poor?” 



  • Chapter 6: The Poor (Galatians 2:10)

    In this chapter, Fr. Mark Mary explains that an important mission of the Church to be mindful of the poor: It is a biblical calling.

  • Chapter 7: For I Was Hungry (Matthew 25)

    Our salvation is at stake if we do not answer the cry of the poor. This is a harsh truth, but one that should convict each one of us. “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and y...

  • Chapter 8: Introduction

    What are the areas of need in our communities in which we can serve? How can we discern what the best choice is for our parish, ourselves, and our families? We can’t do everything, but we can choose a few things and do them well!

  • Chapter 9: The Three Tiers

    In this chapter, Fr. Mark-Mary walks us through the areas of need and how to discern where our parishes can effectively serve. The three categories or “wounds” he focuses on are the Structural Wound, the Material Wound, and the Heart Wound.

  • Chapter 10: Discerning

    Once we understand the poor’s three primary needs, how can we begin to discern where to start? Father answers those questions with stunning simplicity in this chapter.

  • Chapter 11: The Family Paradigm

    Father makes note of the family paradigm as an example for how to think of serving the poor. We are brothers and sisters with the same Father. We are one Body in Christ.

  • Chapter 12: Introduction

    In this chapter, Fr. Mark-Mary introduces a new section in which he dives into the practical ways we can begin serving the poor as a parish right away.

  • Chapter 13: It Starts with Prayer

    Are you regularly including the poor in your prayers? Does that even help? The answer is yes! It all starts with prayer. In this chapter, Father makes the connection to help us keep the poor at the forefront of our prayer.

  • Chapter 14: Modeling and Changing the Culture

    To model and change the culture in our parishes, our efforts have to begin with our parish staff. In this chapter, Father gives practical examples of using stories in homilies, testimonies from the community, and personal announcements about current programs and opportunities to increase engagement.

  • Chapter 15: Jesus Runs

    In this chapter, Fr. Mark-Mary gives one of the most simple and easy ways to begin serving the poor tomorrow.

  • Chapter 16: Charity Campaigns

    Do campaigns actually make a difference? Father Mark-Mary discusses how charity campaigns will actually aid financial gifts in the future if done consistently and authentically.

  • Chapter 17: Foreign Mission Trips

    Finally, Father explores the benefits and impact of foreign mission trips in the overall mission of your parish in service to the poor.

  • Chapter 18: Introduction

    The most challenging aspect of inviting others to serve the poor is the various obstacles that keep people from showing up. Fr. Mark-Mary addresses the five most common obstacles in people’s hearts that explain why they struggle to serve the poor consistently. He then proposes solutions to each t...

  • Chapter 19: Indifference

    Indifference is the first obstacle to overcome, and Fr. Mark-Mary proposes that actual contact with the poor will be the solution to dispelling indifference and fostering compassion.

  • Chapter 20: Time

    Time is one of the biggest obstacles we face when trying to serve the poor. Father proposes the idea of “creative time” to create time or make time for those we love.

  • Chapter 21: Fear

    If fear is the primary obstacle for a person, the solution is similar to the solution for indifference. Exposure in gentle, simple, and easy ways will be the key to casting out fear. In this critical chapter, Father Mark-Mary explores this very real topic.

  • Chapter 22: Judgement

    There are two practical ways to combat judgment, especially of those that we tend to look down upon. Father Mark-Mary discusses them in this chapter.

  • Chapter 23: Lack of Fruit

    Are we trying to solve a problem or are we trying to love a person? This will determine our perseverance where there is a lack of fruit.

  • Chapter 24: Introduction

    We do not want to use the poor as a means to an end, but it is important to recognize that there are incredible fruits that come forth as a result of engaging meaningfully in this work.